Arizona Peyote Laws
In the state of Arizona when you are found in possession of drugs, it is a serious offense. The severity of the offense often depends on the kind, the quantity, the intentions, and the number of prior convictions you have on record.
What Is Peyote?
Peyote is a very unique cactus that has been used both medicinally and religiously among people of indigenous ethnicity. Native Americans believed that the use of peyote in religious ceremonies connected people with God.
The truth of the matter is that peyote is a cactus that is slowly becoming endangered due to a decrease in its population. It is the alkaloids located within the cactus that gives off the psychoactive effect. It was this effect that caused the government to become worrisome about the usage of peyote and move to have it considered illegal.
When the alkaloids are dried and turned into a powder it is called mescaline sulfate, which is the purest form of mescaline and provides the maximum effect of the peyote. This is the raw form of peyote that has the largest potential of becoming addictive.
The reason that peyote is illegal is because it is categorized as a hallucinogen. Because of the hallucinogenic qualities is can be grouped together with drugs like LSD. Even though the composition of peyote also includes a stimulant, the reaction to it the same. The heightened sense of being outside of reality and seeing things with brighter colors and other heightened senses.
Arizona Drug Penalties
Arizona has strict laws against drug possession and they have broken these drugs down into six different categories: peyote, substances emitting toxic vapors, marijuana, prescription drugs, narcotics, and the classification of dangerous drugs.
The convictions for possessing drugs in Arizona can range anywhere from a class 1 misdemeanor to class 4 felony unless you are considered a habitual offender or the arrest takes place near a school, then it could be a higher charge.
Besides risking your freedom with prison time if you are caught, you are also looking at being out an extremely large chunk of change depending on what you are caught with. Without prior convictions against you, if you are caught with drugs in your possession, you could be looking at up to 3.75 years in prison and $150,000 in fines. Keep in mind this is only if this is your first offense. Habitual offenses and if you are caught near a school can bring you even more time incarcerated and fines.
Peyote specific possession charges begin with a class 6 felony. This charge can be raised to a higher felony if there are prior drug convictions on your record. The prison time for a class 6 felony peyote possession charge is four months to two years. The fines can be in excess of $150,000.
A lawyer who specializes in drug crimes is the best option when looking for legal representation if you find yourself facing a charge for peyote possession. Your lawyer can argue that there was a valid reason for the possession or build a case on other determining factors. In either scenario, obtaining legal representation when arrested on a drug charge is your only chance at reducing the sentence or getting the charges dropped.
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